LIBR 285-02
Research Methods in Library and Information Science
Topic: Youth Services
Spring 2009 Greensheet

Dr. Anthony Bernier
Home Phone: (510)339-6880
Office Hours:
by appointment

Greensheet Links
Textbooks and Readings
Course Requirements
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Mission of the School
The School of Library and Information Science (SLIS) educates professionals and develops leaders who organize, manage and enable the effective use of information and ideas in order to contribute to the well-being of our communities.

Getting Launched
SLIS utilizes a networked learning environment called Angel for class communications, discussion, submitting assignments, and grade records. You should enroll in our 200-02 Angel site between Thursday 15 January 2009 and the first day of class on Thursday 25 January 2009. You will be required to use a password access code I will send to you via the MYSJSU e-mail Messaging system prior to 15 January.
The class begins on Thursday 22 January. Weekly sessions end on Saturdays. And Saturdays at 5pm will be the due time for most of our assignments.

Course Description

Research methods, focusing on evaluating youth services, covering fundamental principles, processes, values and roles of research for professional application in information organizations. Students will become critical consumers of research products. Emphasis will concentrate on developing, planning, and producing quality program evaluation.

This section of research methods will introduce students to the theory and methods of planning and evaluating youth services (children and young adults). It explores the ways in which professionals identify and frame research and evaluation questions, assess current literature on youth services topics, locate and critically use primary and secondary source data, and formulate viable and worthwhile evaluation and planning projects. Emphasis will be placed on the research tools and processes professionals use and the role information professionals play in their development, dissemination, and use.

Course Prerequisites: None

SLIS LIBR 285 Waiver Reminder:
If you have taken and passed a graduate level-research methods course AND completed a thesis or dissertation as part of a previous graduate degree (as documented by an official transcript) you can petition the SLIS Graduate Advisor to waive the LIBR 285 requirement. A waiver, if granted, does not reduce the total units required for the MLIS degree.

Course Objectives

Learning Outcomes
At the end of this course students will be able to:

  • Conduct a systematic and critical literature review of published research
  • Articulate different types of research methods, appropriately apply them, and understand their respective liabilities
  • Identify and apply ethical concerns connected to primary research
  • Gain exposure to appropriate data compiling procedures
  • Demonstrate knowledge of fundamental principles and processes of conducting evaluative research
  • Develop, plan, and produce a viable evaluative proposal

Students will also be able to:

  • Explain current trends in youth services research
  • Show proficiency in using primary, secondary, and reference sources in the conduct of research
  • Appreciate the importance of protecting human subjects in historical research and demonstrate the ability to work with an institutional review board in developing a research plan

LIBR 285 supports the following SLIS Core Competencies:

  • Understand the nature of research, research methods and research findings; retrieve, evaluate and synthesize scholarly and professional literature for informed decision-making by specific client groups.
  • Articulate the ethics, values and foundational principles of library and information professionals and their role in the promotion of intellectual freedom.

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Course Requirements

All assignments are must be turned at 5 p.m. (Pacific time) on the day they are due. Late submissions will be reduced by 20% of the total points possible for that assignment.

  • Elluminate Class Sessions (3 sessions): 4 points each
    Attend and participate in three, three-hour Elluminate sessions (dates and times listed below)
  • IRB Certification: 5 points
    Complete the National Cancer Institute’s online workshop titled: “Human Participant Protections Education for Research Teams.” Completion of this workshop is required by all San José State University faculty and students intending to do research with living human subjects. The course can be located at:

    You can take this short on-line mini-course at any point during the semester. It will take about two hours to complete. When you have finished the course, you will be given a certificate, which you should submit to me as proof of completion.
  • Discussion Board Topics (6 throughout the term): 3 points each
    Based on relevant readings and other course experiences, these interactive posts demonstrate, articulate, and share your learning with fellow students.
  • Briefs (4 throughout the term): 5 points each
    1-2 page content-based and skill-enhanced writing assignments
  • Primary Source Survey: 10 points
    Discover, locate, describe and evaluate primary sources important for professionals serving young people (3-5 pages)
  • Research Study Evaluation: 10 points
    Discover and evaluate a recent monographic study of youth (3-5 pages)
  • Term Paper: 25 points
    Conduct a comprehensive evaluation of an actual library youth program (15-20 pages)


Deliverables Grade Weight Due Dates
Elluminate sessions three (3) 4 points each 5-8pm (Pacific Time)
on each of following dates:
  • Monday 16 February
  • Monday 16 March
  • Monday 13 April
Online Discussions: six (6) 3 points each TBA
IRB Workshop 5 points TBD
4 Briefs (1-2 pages each) 5 points each
  • Saturday 31 January, 5pm Pacific
  • Saturday 7 February, 5pm Pacific
  • Saturday 14 February, 5pm Pacific
  • Saturday 4 April, 5pm Pacific
2 Short Papers (3-5 pages each) 10 points each
  • Saturday 7 March, 5pm Pacific
  • Saturday 11 April, 5pm Pacific
Term Paper 25 points
  • Saturday 23 May, 5pm Pacific


Dropping the Course
The last day to drop this course without an entry on your permanent record is Tuesday 3 February 2009.

Textbooks and Readings

Recommended Style Manual

Scholarly research in LIS requires the effective communication of findings and evaluation of the writings of others. An important aspect of this scholarly communication is understanding and demonstrating facility with standard LIS citation formatting. Thus, if you have not done so already, I strongly encourage you to invest in a copy of the:

Other Readings
Other articles and resources will be assigned throughout the term. These will be available through the King Library’s full text databases, the web, or in our Course Documents.

Required Textbooks:

  • Dresang, E. T., Gross, M., & Holt, L. E. (2006). Dynamic Youth Services Through Outcome-based Planning And Evaluation. ALA. Available through Amazon: 0838909183. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Best, A. L. (2007). Representing Youth: Methodological Issues in Critical Youth Studies. New York University Press. Available through Amazon: 0814799531. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F


In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work;
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation.  You must repeat the class the following semester. If -on the second attempt- you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

General Expectations, Rights and Responsibilities of the Student

As members of the academic community, students accept both the rights and responsibilities incumbent upon all members of the institution. Students are encouraged to familiarize themselves with SJSU's policies and practices pertaining to the procedures to follow if and when questions or concerns about a class arises. See University Policy S90-5 at More detailed information on a variety of related topics is available in the SJSU catalog at In general, it is recommended that students begin by seeking clarification or discussing concerns with their instructor. If such conversation is not possible, or if it does not serve to address the issue, it is recommended that the student contact the Department Chair as a next step.

Dropping and Adding

Students are responsible for understanding the policies and procedures about add/drop, grade forgiveness, etc. Refer to the current semester's Catalog Policies section at Add/drop deadlines can be found on the current academic year calendars document on the Academic Calendars webpage at The Late Drop Policy is available at Students should be aware of the current deadlines and penalties for dropping classes.

Information about the latest changes and news is available at the Advising Hub at

Consent for Recording of Class and Public Sharing of Instructor Material

University Policy S12-7,, requires students to obtain instructor's permission to record the course and the following items to be included in the syllabus:

  • "Common courtesy and professional behavior dictate that you notify someone when you are recording him/her. You must obtain the instructor's permission to make audio or video recordings in this class. Such permission allows the recordings to be used for your private, study purposes only. The recordings are the intellectual property of the instructor; you have not been given any rights to reproduce or distribute the material."
    • It is suggested that the syllabus include the instructor's process for granting permission, whether in writing or orally and whether for the whole semester or on a class by class basis.
    • In classes where active participation of students or guests may be on the recording, permission of those students or guests should be obtained as well.
  • "Course material developed by the instructor is the intellectual property of the instructor and cannot be shared publicly without his/her approval. You may not publicly share or upload instructor generated material for this course such as exam questions, lecture notes, or homework solutions without instructor consent."

Academic integrity

Your commitment, as a student, to learning is evidenced by your enrollment at San Jose State University. The University Academic Integrity Policy F15-7 at requires you to be honest in all your academic course work. Faculty members are required to report all infractions to the office of Student Conduct and Ethical Development. The Student Conduct and Ethical Development website is available at

Campus Policy in Compliance with the American Disabilities Act

If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, or if you need to make special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an appointment with me as soon as possible, or see me during office hours. Presidential Directive 97-03 at requires that students with disabilities requesting accommodations must register with the Accessible Education Center (AEC) at to establish a record of their disability.

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